The good news? So you can ask a restaurant here to show you the paperwork, and these are handsome looking pieces of paper, but it is awfully difficult for the average American consumer to read one. Also, American Wagyu or Domestic Wagyu is more found as filet mignon, flat iron or … In several cases purebred Wagyu were exported from Japan, especially to Australia and the US, where some - but certainly not all - farmers have continued to breed them with pure bloodlines. Here's how you've been fooled. These cows are pampered to no end (stories are told of massages, classical music and beer feedings), and the end result is beef that’s so intensely marbled that it’s a full two … One key is the symbol used in Japan to mark Kobe beef, a round flower fringed with petals, and this icon must be on the accompanying paperwork. "You can guarantee that it was not real Kobe beef because real Kobe beef from Japan is not imported in the United States at all," he says. Is that real Kobe beef? According to the Kobe Beef Council in Japan, there is still no Kobe beef at all exported to Europe, where many restaurants engage in the same kind of false advertising that has long been pervasive in this country. "So, we can call pretty much anything we want Kobe," Olmsted says. Thanks to the recent changes, the single easiest way to eat real Kobe beef in the US with confidence is to visit the Wynn Las Vegas resort, which is obviously not a great solution since it is very limiting to all those people who are not visiting Las Vegas. While Kobe cattlemen in Japan have both patent and trademarks on the different terminology for Kobe beef, U.S. law does not recognize or protect these trademarks. Shop H-E-B Wagyu Beef Tenderloin Steak Center Cut Thick - compare prices, see product info & reviews, add to shopping list, or find in store. Despite the hype about the return of Kobe beef to our shores, the reality is much different. Only a few hundred pounds of real Kobe beef is imported into the U.S. every year. Sides of beef at a slaughterhouse just after government inspectors have graded them. If you see Kobe beef on a menu in London, you know it is fake,” said Hirokatsu Hirai, Senior Director of Japan’s S Foods, the largest exporter of Kobe beef. December 19, 2019. Not only is it very well located and accommodating to international guests, it also offers a full slate of top quality Japanese regional beef, from Kobe and elsewhere, along with dry aged American beef and Australian beef for comparison. info on the steer and its lineage, the smaller cards to the left go to restaurants and retailers as the beef is cut up and for real Kobe beef, the flower logo stickers at top are added to the certificate. So yes, Kobe beef is excellent, and the very strict rules under which it is produced, only from one very particular breed, limited in age and size, only in the Hyogo prefecture, with specific feed and then strict grading, ensure that the real thing is consistently delicious. While “marbling” is important in all beef and the main basis for USDA grading such as Prime, Westerners are more concerned with the amount of fat while Japanese focus on its pervasiveness. The first question I got from friends and colleagues after returning from Kobe was, “Is it really that good?” or “Is it the best?” Since taste is a matter of opinion, the latter is a question that is impossible to answer, while the answer to the former is emphatically yes - Kobe beef is that good. Through the first 11 months of 2013 the US received just 17 head of Kobe beef, never more than six in a single month and often none at all. There are several reasons for the very scant supply, including the fact that the USDA requires slaughterhouses in other countries to be subject to the same regulations, facilities, paperwork and inspections as those here, and only one plant in Japan complied. Is that real Kobe beef? Because the region was so isolated, however, these original wagyu cattle were not transferred for work in other … Tell us what you think! I am an award winning travel journalist & bestselling author. Also, and this is very important, Kobe beef fat contains high levels of unsaturated fatty acids, which melt at much lower temperatures than saturated fatty acids - including on your tongue. Kobe beef is considered the most abundantly marbled in the world, brimming with the creamiest, most decadent, most flavorful streaks of fat a steak can have. In Japan, every restaurant and retail shop selling Kobe beef displays a 10-digit ID number and usually a scannable QR code that corresponds to the particular animal from which the beef was cut. The certificate includes detailed... [+] info on the steer and its lineage, the smaller cards to the left go to restaurants and retailers as the beef is cut up and for real Kobe beef, the flower logo stickers at top are added to the certificate. For a current roster see here. But the playing field has changed significantly since 2012, so I am revisiting the topic with the new truth about the world’s most famous and coveted beef. The first two terms clearly suggest that the product comes from Japan, just as I would completely expect Colombian Coffee or French Champagne to come from Colombia and France, no ifs, ands or buts. The new book Real Food, Fake Food (Algonquin, July 2016), covers the gamut of food frauds and scams... [+] American consumers face today. Dive deep into the multifaceted world of coffee in the award winning documentary, Black Gold . “Kobe beef is the rarest among Japanese beef, but there is a contradiction between how well known the name Kobe beef is and the actual amount of beef,” said Hiroo Miyanishi of Japan Agriculture’s Livestock Section. H-E-B Prime 1 Beef Ribeye Steak Bone-In USDA Prime, Avg. The bad news is that the vast majority of what is advertised as Kobe beef continues to be counterfeit, and it remains very difficult for consumers to tell the difference - at least until they taste it, though there are some options available, which I will detail below. You should not rely solely on the information presented here. However, these certificates are in Japanese. It’s not that it is so much better in Japan - it is so much better when it’s real. The cows and bulls used to make real Kobe beef must be born and raised in the Kobe region of Japan. For visitors, I emphatically recommend The Oak Door steakhouse at the Grand Hyatt Tokyo hotel in Roppongi Hills. Write a Review. In sharp contrast, the US cattle industry produced some 29,300,000 head of beef cattle in 2013, according to beefusa.org. we recommend. Between the time the USDA changed its rules last August and the end of 2012, exactly five head of Kobe beef cattle were shipped to the United States - five. In this country, much of the Japanese cattle has been cross bred with domestic stock and diluted, often heavily, to intentionally produce a result more in keeping with the traditional texture and taste of American beef (and to reduce costs). Be the first to write a review! Because the emphasis is on the very rich meat itself, Kobe steaks are usually small and served... [+] simply and rare. ". $53.85 each ($3.59/lb) Add to list. There’s no shortage of places to get a great steak in Las Vegas, but to find the cut above, you have to do a little digging. 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